Is Protest Pointless?
April 10, 2017
Filed under Opinion
Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.
Email This Story
“Protest is pointless.”
This is a phrase that has been used all too often in light of the worldwide Women’s Marches and Muslim Travel Ban protests. These protests no doubt gathered the attention of millions; but almost 3 months after the fact, have they done anything?
The argument against protest is that it does not cause any immediate change or action and nothing comes of it other than further vexation on both sides. While these are all true statements, the dictionary definition of protest is “the act of making a strong public expression of disagreement or disapproval.” Nowhere does it say that protest must cause immediate change. In fact, that is not the purpose of protest at all. It is meant to raise awareness of the issue that is being protested and hopefully lead to a larger change in the future. In many cases, progress has been made. Not in a single moment, but as a result of a large movement. The Civil Rights movement, the Vietnam War, and the Suffragettes are all examples of the countless times in history that people coming out in mass has led to a greater change. With recent movements such as the Muslim Travel Ban protests against Trump, as I perceive it, no one was trying to get him out of office or reverse the authoritative measures he has taken. We, as citizens, know that is simply not in our power; and that is democracy.
So, why protest then? The answer is simple: it is so important to show pride for a cause that a large mass of people share. It is important to stand up for those who may not be able to stand up for themselves. In situations such as the Women’s Marches, it is important to remind people that we are here and we have a voice.
We are so lucky to live in a country where we are able to voice our opinions and stand up for what we believe in, especially in a public manner. Whether you believe protest is pointless or not, that is one thing we can all agree on.